Scottish Natural Heritage has published natural capital accounts for the climate, tourism, recreational and health benefits from the land it owns comprised mainly of national nature reserves (NNRs).
The accounts value the net natural capital of the 56,000 hectares of land at £683m over 60 years , providing £28 million worth of benefits per year.
Annual management costs were estimated at £3.5million which means the benefits are worth eight times the cost.
SNH Chief Executive Francesca Osowska said:
This innovative report vividly illustrates that our nature reserves are providing an outstanding return on investment of time, money and resources.
Nature is an asset, but one we need to protect and invest in. Key to this is tackling climate change impacts – and nature is a solution. We need a rich variety of life to be able to sustain food supplies, water and the air we breathe. But it’s not just about conservation – enhancing our nature is also part of the solution to the climate emergency. Our nature reserves are critical to our work of ensuring a nature-rich future for Scotland.
Read the full report on Testing a natural capital approach on SNH land.